In Wellington you can now buddy up with a veggie if you want to try a plant based diet out for yourself.

Members of the public wanting to find out more about vegetarian or vegan lifestyles can access a free mentoring scheme being run through the Wellington Vegetarian Society.

With health issues and animal rights information hitting the mainstream daily there are a lot of people who want to know more about adopting a diet that is ethical and potentially healthier.  However, people may not know much about being veggie or how to go about it.

The scheme evolved from a conversation at one of the regular Vegetarian Society Potluck Dinners, in Wellington, last year.  It was felt more people would enjoy this type of food and friendship, if they were given the chance to find out more about it.  As such the scheme is aimed at demystifying the veggie lifestyle and making it more accessible to people wanting to adopt a plant based diet.  This is not about providing nutritional advice or converting people to a lifestyle that’s not right for them.

People may have a whole range of reasons to try out the scheme for themselves.  They may want to find out how they can introduce meat free days into their week, cater for a teen in their family whose gone veggie, go completely vegetarian themselves, find out how difficult it really is to give up cheese or simply ask a fellow vegan for different recipe ideas.

The current Buddies are all full vegetarians or vegans who have been living the lifestyle for at least six months and who feel able to encourage and support others to try it out for themselves.

Anyone can apply to the scheme  – meat eater, vegetarian or vegan.  They will be linked up with a Buddy according to their goals, availability and location.  They then have six contact sessions, either face-to-face or by telephone, where they can set up a plan and work at it, supported by their Buddy.

It is hoped that through their connection with their Buddy, people will find out if a Veg lifestyle is for them and/or find it easier to transition into a full vegetarian or vegan lifestyle if that’s what they want.

Anyone can sign up for the scheme by emailing Maya Hammarsal at:

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